One of the best things about MIT Sloan is getting to work with a diversely talented group of people. I've been studying cinematography and film production, and the Sports Conference provided a great opportunity to create a short film. So, I reached out to my classmates and was met with enthusiasm and eagerness to help... two great qualities of the Sloan community.
First, I talked with Tyler Spalding, 2nd year MBA, because I had seen some of the great videos that he had worked on (Values at Sloan). Tyler jumped on board and did an incredible job conducting the interviews and pulling great lines out of the elite people that we filmed. He also had some brilliant video editing ideas.
Next, I was connected to Matt Lieber, 1st year MBA, because of his experience as a radio producer at NPR. Within a few seconds of talking with Matt, he had the awesome idea of the “Stats Hall of Fame”. During filming, Tyler and I were amazed at how easily Matt could coerce anyone to be in our film. Also, the audio in the film is all Matt… and it is awesome!
That was the team… an experienced short film maker, a senior radio producer, and a photographer turned cinematographer. I asked Matt and Tyler to write about the experience to share their perspectives…
I did this project for two reasons: I wanted to learn something, and I wanted to make something. I was a radio producer before coming to Sloan (yeah, I know), and I miss telling stories. The Sports Analytics Conference allowed us to do that in a really fun setting. For instance, trying to convince Mark Cuban or Bill Simmons to stoop to the level of student produced web video was an amusing challenge. It wasn't the kind of experience I expected to have at business school, but Sloan sneaks up on you that way sometimes: one day you're studying managerial accounting, the next day you're ordering around an NBA owner.
As for what I learned, I'd never really produced video before, so Justin taught me a lot. Somehow he's able to use a still camera to capture incredibly rich, cinematic footage. I think of him as an engineer who sidelines as Orson Welles. I've already applied some of what Justin taught me. For instance, I started shooting footage of my 5 month old kid. He's generally easier to cajole than Mark Cuban, and more even tempered.
I showed up to the Sports Conference with innocent plans of helping Justin and Matt film a promotional video. I have produced a variety of short, humorous, internet meme videos while at MIT Sloan, and I figured I would be helping with some creative picture and audio content. But, your Sloan classmates will often surprise you with their ingenuity, and I learned that Matt had already crafted the perfect “script” for the day – with me as a host sponsoring the fictitious Sports Statistics Hall of Fame. Realizing that this was indeed a perfect opportunity to create some buzz for the Conference in a unique and fun way, I was completely on board. We proceeded to interview many famous panelists and attendees, which was an absolute blast. I mean, who is going to pass up the chance to have a quick “back and forth” with ESPN’s Michael Wilbon?
So that's that. Another memorable experience at MIT Sloan. We hope you enjoyed our film. Let us know in the comments if you have any feedback.